I say this every month, but this month I especially mean it — HOW are we here already?! How do we have a six-month-old? It seems like we just brought her home from the hospital, but we’re already halfway through her first year.
The night before her “half birthday” I teared up as I laid her down in her crib and said goodnight. When we hit big milestones, sometimes it feels like the baby days that I’ve dreamed of for so long are slipping through my fingers too quickly. It’s like Clara read my mind that night, because she grabbed my hand with her little chubby fingers and smiled up at me so sweetly (something that she wouldn’t have done as recently as a couple of weeks ago). It was a good reminder that even though it’s bittersweet to see her babyhood fly by, it’s also really special to watch her personality develop. I’m excited for all of the new milestones that we still have ahead of us.
Out of the six months since she was born, we definitely noticed the most transformation this month! Up until this month she was generally a pretty chill baby, but she made us work really hard to earn smiles and giggles. Then around 5.5 months, it was like a switch flipped and all of the sudden she started getting a lot more social. Now it’s usually easy to get her to smile and laugh and that is beyond rewarding!! She’s also “talking” up a storm (sometimes babbling, sometimes screeching LOUDLY). She can interact with her world and with us more than ever before, and she’s starting to seem less like a baby and more like a real tiny human, if that makes sense! Sometimes I catch an unexpected preview of her as a toddler just for a brief second, and it catches me off guard every time.
We also feel like we’ve hit more of a stride with her routine. She’s sleeping about 14 hours a day (11 of which are straight through the night) and now that her naps are on a more predictable schedule, it’s getting easier to understand her cues and plan our days. This definitely feels like a “sweet spot” in her babyhood — we’ve all gotten to know each other better, we’ve made it through some of the tougher learning curves, and she’s really interactive and happy without being mobile yet 😉 I wish this stage could last a little longer before we get into the next hurdles like teething and crawling!
E became eligible to get the COVID vaccine this month and got his first shot almost exactly one year after we went into lockdown for the first time. We’ll still be living carefully this year because Clara can’t be vaccinated anytime soon, but we are so excited to be able to introduce her to fully vaccinated family members soon. Becoming parents during a pandemic has been a wild ride, and it will be strange to navigate our “new normal” soon. I really enjoyed this article about it, and a lot of the author’s experiences resonated with me!
A few more favorite memories/details from this month:
• Daddy is the clear favorite parent in this house and I’m only slightly jealous! 😉 Clara absolutely lights up whenever he walks into the room and it’s the sweetest to see them play with each other. They’re already best buds.
• She’s becoming a snuggler!!! After finishing her bottle, she’ll curl up and rest her head on my chest for awhile. She’s usually such an active baby and wants to see everything, so these peaceful moments feel like heaven to me.
• Up until this month, she didn’t really understand the concept of video calls with family and friends, but now she recognizes that there is a person “in the phone” when we FaceTime! She says “hey” in her own little baby way and it’s the cutest.
• She gives us “kisses,” aka slobbering all over our faces. We call them “donas,” which means doughnuts in Spanish
• One of her favorite tricks is sticking her hands in our mouth
• Some of the things that always make her smile: peekaboo (yay, finally!!), smacking our lips, kissy sounds, fake sneezes, dad bellyflopping onto the bed, & the song “Oh Yeah” by Yellow (the one from Ferris Bueller, lol).
• E sings some of his favorite Spanish nursery rhymes to her: “Papas y Papas” and “El Gallo Pinto.”
• She had her first food (avocado) on her six-month birthday! I can’t wait to share more about that in the next post!!
• She is just NOT into rolling! She’s able to roll both ways, but she has absolutely no interest in it. She’s much more into tripod sitting, so we finally gave up on rolling for now!
• Whatever she can get her hands on goes in her mouth, especially burp cloths! She will happily munch on those all day long. She also loves Clementino (her teething toy), and she likes to play with a bag of chocolate chips because the bag is colorful and it rattles and crinkles! I just have to watch to make sure she doesn’t break the bag open!!
• Although she doesn’t sleep in our bedroom anymore, sometimes after she wakes up we’ll bring her into bed with us to snuggle for a few minutes before we all get up for the day. That quiet time with her is the sweetest.
• She loves feeling the texture of different fabrics, especially my flannel pajama pants, and she likes to rub her hands on them
• She moved from the bassinet stroller into the “big kid” stroller seat this month! She likes being able to look out and see the world when we go for walks!
• It was a big month of spring cleaning! I started packing up her newborn gear and clearing out the 0-6 month clothes from her closet. Although it was a bit sad to sell/donate some of her tiny things, I had fun searching for clothing in the next size up!
• She is finding her voice in all kinds of different ways. She’s the most chatty when she has her hands in her mouth! She screeches LOUDLY and often and call her a baby pterodactyl. She says “hey,” “wawa,” and “mama” but I think those words are probably unintentional 🙂 She also likes to yell at the books I read to her – I think it’s because she’s very passionate about turning the pages all by herself 😉
• We had some really nice early spring weather this month, and I got to take her to play in the park for the first time in her life! We sat out on a blanket in the sunshine and it made me look forward to this summer, when we can hopefully spend lots more time outdoors!
• She’s a wild child in her crib, and no matter where we lay her down to sleep, she always spins around in circles and ends up with her legs up against the crib bars.
• She sits herself up when we hold onto her hands, and she also likes to practice “standing” by locking out her knees. She is very wobbly and I think it’s adorable 🙂
One of our favorite books – the illustrations in this one are so beautiful!
Her little baby hands are soooo soft!
She still loooooves getting walked around the apartment in the baby carrier!
Love these outtakes so much!! She goes from grumpy to happy (and back again) in two seconds flat sometimes!
One of her first walks in the big kid stroller!
When we put her down for a nap and walk out of the room, this is how she looks at us – it’s like she thinks that if she’s charming enough, she can convince us to come back and play longer. 🙂
Such a relief that she no longer hates tummy time!!!
This one cracks me up! The poster child for COVID-era boredom right here 😉
Those baby snugs!!!
I had fun changing over her bookshelf from Valentine’s Day to Easter!
I’ve also been having WAY too much fun putting together outfits for her via the world of secondhand clothing and BST Facebook groups!
St. Patrick’s Day…our pot of gold at the end of the rainbow!
Her FAVORITE, Clementino! She will happily munch on this and inspect it all day long!
That feeling when daddy finishes work for the day and gets to come hang out 🙂
Our first time hanging outside apart from walks!
E has been super into puzzles every weekend, and he always lets Clara put in the last piece.
Chomping on burp cloths!
I spent 20 minutes photographing some portraits of the two of them, and I will treasure these photos forever!
The day E got his first COVID shot! Woohoo!!!!
It’s so nice when E can join us for walks on the weekends!
Clara’s HALF-birthday fell on the same day as our first baby’s due date — they were exactly six months apart. Over time, the sadness of losing the first pregnancy has faded and been replaced with gratitude. We are beyond lucky to have our little girl. But I still like to acknowledge and remember our first, who made it possible for her to be here today. 🌈 🦋
It’s seeming more and more like we might have a blue-eyed baby, but we’ll see if they change as she gets older!
You can find Clara’s previous monthly recaps here: